The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio

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April 2, 2013

‘I saw everything’

Mother watches grandson kill her son

ASHTABULA —  A grieving mother on Monday described watching her grandson put a gun to her son’s head, pull the trigger and seeing her son collapse to the ground.

After Sunday’s Easter service, Richard Riddle, 52, had gone back inside Hiawatha Church of God in Christ when his son showed up, said Riddle’s mother, Mattie Richardson.

Her grandson, Reshad Riddle, 28, had walked up the sidewalk along the church. He asked to speak to his father. Richardson went inside to get him.

“I thought he just wanted to talk to him,” she said. “I saw my grandson talking to his father and I saw him shoot him. The blood. I saw everything.”

She ran to her son and knelt over him, she said.

“I had three children — two sons and a daughter,” she said. “I’ve lost two sons.”

Ann Riddle, 50, of Ashtabula, is Richardson’s daughter, and sister to the deceased, said of a younger brother, “He was 5 years old and was hit by a motorcycle,” she said.

Mattie Richardson couldn’t find words to describe it all. She’s finding strength in prayer and “the saints” from her church, she said.

Sunday’s tragedy has saddened the entire community, said Betty Holman of Ashtabula, who also is Richard Riddle’s aunt.

“It seems like a dream,” she said. “It doesn’t seem like it’s real ... like it happened on Easter Sunday.”

Ann Riddle said, “We are a very close, supportive family.”

The family also has supported Reshad Riddle despite his troubles with the law, Ann Riddle said.

“He was a good kid,” she said. “As a teen, he got on the wrong track but we stood by him.”

Reshad Riddle now faces charges of aggravated murder, having a weapon under a disability, and carrying a concealed weapon, according to Municipal Court records. If convicted, he could receive the death penalty or life in prison.

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